Oftentimes, gearheads are second-or-third generation car lovers, brought up at the knee of dad in the garage by working on a project car, and GM Aero Performance Engineer John Bednarchik is no different. After restoring a ‘Vette with his dad as a young boy, the foundation was laid, and Bednarchik followed his dreams to land a place in the automotive biz – he had a hand in sculpting the brand-spankin’-new Stingray’s aerodynamics.
This interview with him covers a number of topics, most notably that the car spent three-plus years in development before coming to a final decision on how the car would look, and how clay modeling is used to sculpt the bodylines before a panel is ever built. The styling affects the performance of the car, and it appears as if no stone has been left unturned in the car’s final shape.
He also discusses the influence of racing accomplishments and how they have played a part in the Stingray’s final design – the hood extractors help to keep the car cool along with providing massive amounts of downforce to allow the Stingray achieve it’s expected skidpad numbers of 1.0g, an incredible number for a production car.
Bednarchik expresses his gratitude for the ability to work on such a groundbreaking car like the C7 Corvette – a crowning achievement in anyone’s career. It’s nice to be able to learn a bit about the people who create the cars; oftentimes we just think of them as a bunch of engineers hiding behind big plate glass windows in the Tech Center. The new Stingray will go on sale sometime this summer, but cars have already been spotted prowling the streets, and it has been announced as the Pace Car for the 2013 Indy 500 – its 12th appearance as the lead ride in the iconic race. Have you put your order in yet? We’re still combing the couch for pennies.